Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Book Review: The Appeal by John Grisham

This is my last John Grisham book. I don't say that lightly, as I have enjoyed reading Grisham's novels in the past, especially the early works. However, his smirky and sarcastic attitude toward fundamentalist, conservative Christians in this book is intolerable.

Please don't mistake my meaning. I don't read only books of people with whom I agree. I enjoy books, fiction and non-fiction, that make me think, that stretch my mind, and that challenge me to defend my faith. I am, however, offended by a man who claims to be a christian, yet seems to have no idea of who or what the Christians that I know are or what we believe.

Grisham has just gone too far in this book. He gives us "christian" characters with one of two sets of values. The christian character is either a) an idiot waiting to be manipulated or, b) the power-hungry megalomaniac.

Perhaps you shall make your own judgement. John Grisham said the following in TIME this past February: I’m a Christian, and those beliefs occasionally come out in the books. One thing you really have to watch as a writer is getting on a soapbox or pulpit about anything. You don’t want to alienate readers.

I'm not sure which soapbox he thinks he's on.

Try Not to Spend it All in One Place

With much relief and anticipation, I received my first paycheck in the mail last Friday.


That's forty-four dollars.

I knew before it got there that it would only be a partial week. However, what I did not know, is that the insurance is billed a full month in advance, so a month's worth was taken out of the first check. Ouch.

I figure that I worked for about $1.72 an hour. You just have to laugh. The next one will be better. I am almost certain!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Book Review: Tisha by Anne Hobbs Purdy and Richard Specht

Thanks to my mom for loaning me this book for the long drive in the moving truck! I would have devoured it, but forced myself to slow down just to make it last.

The book is written as the autobiography by Anne Hobbs, but on the cover, credit is given solely to Richard Specht, so I am not sure how many of the words are Anne's, and how many are the co-author's. Also, interesting to note, that we are promised a sequel which never happened. Rather disappointing.

Anne Hobbs is Tisha (teacher), a 19-year-old girl who teaches the village school in the remote Alaskan village of Chicken in the 1920s. A side note: Chicken (so the story goes) was named so because the early settlers could not spell "ptarmigan". I wonder why they would name a town after a bird, but I suppose worse has been done.

The book deals alot with the racial differences in the village. I was interested to learn that their were not only the prejudices from the whites to the natives, but also from the natives who had intermarried with the whites, who looked down on the other native Alaskans and the "half-breeds".

My grandfather was raised in an Alaskan village during the era when this story took place. I wish he was still alive, as I would question him as to how it was for him. Tisha made me think alot about him and how his upbringing must have been.